To the gal who almost side-swiped me…

car

You probably don’t know this, but you almost took me out this afternoon. Your passenger-side mirror was one inch from my driver-side mirror. Yes, I was in my own lane. You, my dear, were not.

I understand that sometimes we drift, and get it back together after a near-miss. Sometimes an animal runs across the road, and we react to avoid hitting it. Or a driver in the opposite direction looks like they may hit us head-on. So, yes, I understand all that, and I am forgiving.

However, young lady, none of that played out. And you wouldn’t know, because your eyes were gazing at your lap, because that was where your phone was perched.

You almost caused an accident today because you were texting. And you don’t even know it.

I dropped my speed down, as I would rather see what you were up to, and avoid any mess you may create. I watched you weave all over your lane. Then you made an illegal turn, and cut someone off, because you were not paying attention. I prayed for the others on the road who would cross your path. And I gave a prayer of thanks that you were no longer an immediate threat to me.

Honestly, I don’t really care what your reasons were for texting and driving. I don’t care if you had a fight with your boyfriend, or your BFF went into labor or your wedding dress didn’t arrive on time. I don’t care if your kid puked at day care or your mom was rushed to the hospital. There is absolutely no good excuse for you to text and drive. And, if you were just coordinating lunch plans, then I admonish you even more. You always have the option to pull over into a parking lot and converse. You do not have the option to text and drive.

You see, there is nothing so dang important going on in your world that you have to take me out of mine. I want to eat dinner with my family. I want to hear my daughter sing at her next concert. I want to go to dinner with my husband and watch my granddaughters play.

Young lady, you may think you know how to text and drive, because it is part of your daily routine. I, as a witness, can tell you this: You can’t text and drive. Really, you can’t. I watched you. It is only because other drivers are paying attention that you have been successful to this point. You had no idea what was happening on the road. You had no reaction time. Oh – and here’s a newsflash – it is against the law to text and drive. But I am sure you know that. You are above the law, because, well, you think you have this skill mastered.

You are young, but you are not invincible, as many in your age group believe. My mid-life wisdom has taught me just how precious each day – and life – is. And, your life is precious, too. Don’t you want to live a little longer?

You are the reason I am apprehensive each time I get behind the wheel. You are the reason I am afraid to let my daughter take the wheel as she learns to drive. You are the reason I tell everyone “be careful” as they head out the door.

Thankfully, I am okay – just angry and a little shaken up over the incident. I will get over it, and I have already forgiven you for scaring me on the road this afternoon. I made it home safely, and I thank God for that.

But, would you please listen? And share with your friends? You can not text and drive. Period. You may think you can, but eventually, you will have to stop. And, most likely you will stop because you will learn a very hard lesson as to why you can’t text and drive. When you eventually plow into another car, and yes, that will happen, I just pray that you don’t kill someone.

Honestly, angry as I am, I really don’t want you to have to pay a tragic price for your stupidity. And the rest of us on the road, well, we really don’t want to be victims of your recklessness.

Have you had enough of people texting and driving? Let me know in the comments below.

© Lynne Cobb – 2013

Update: This post was featured on Midlife Boulevard on Dec. 18, 2013!

 

 

10 Replies to “To the gal who almost side-swiped me…”

  1. I hope she reads this, but it probably has too many words in it. People like that don’t have the attention span for more than 144 characters. I am happy that you are ok.

    1. No kidding…just drives me crazy (pun intended!) How many times must we scream “don’t text and drive!!” to people. And I thanks – glad I am okay, too! 🙂

  2. Amen! This is a situation that happens too often. It doesn’t take very long to start “drifting” out of your lane, once your eyes leave the roadway. If someone doesn’t believe this, they should test it sometime – but make sure you are in a safe area with no other cars around. Just look down for a second. It doesn’t take long. Thanks for writing this blog, Lynne. Hopefully, someone who texts and drives will read this and will head your advise – making the road safer for all.

  3. This is the sort of thing that needs to be part of Driver’s Ed classes. The gory films may have a momentary “scare” factor, but I don’t think anyone changes their driving habits because of them. Maybe some statements like yours would seem more “real”.

    I’m glad you made it home safely and I hope that someone who texts and drives reads this and STOPS!

  4. I am nearly run off I-75 monthly because of the number of people who think they can use their phones and drive. Yesterday, as I approached the entrance to I-75 on Big Beaver, a woman on her phone, driving a huge SUV, decided she needed the spot I already occupied because she, also, wanted to get on the ramp. Close call, pounding heart, and a long honk later, I watch her, in her rear view mirror, looking at me and laughing. You probably don’t want to know what happens in my fantasy life!

  5. Seriously, sometimes I think all this new technology is a bad thing, the way so many idiots think they can do everything while they’re driving. And the young lady who almost hit you, well, you can be sure she will keep right on texting until she does have an accident. And hopefully, no one gets seriously hurt. Glad you dodged that bullet.
    I think they need to change the phrase “common sense” to “rare sense”. Very few people have common sense anymore.

    1. Thank you, Suz. My fear is that driver (and others) will continue to text and drive until she wraps her car around a tree or kills an innocent person. Why they continue to believe they are talented above all other humans is beyond me…

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